An online solicitation of prostitution investigation from October 16 to 19 resulted in the arrest of seven people, the Texas Department of Public Safety Criminal Investigations Division announced.
This operation was conducted simultaneously with a recovery operation attempting to locate and identify victims of sexual trafficking.
Seven people were arrested and booked into Midland and Ector County jails in connection to the investigation, which targeted those allegedly exploiting trafficking victims through sexual solicitation websites, said Sgt. Steven Blanco in a news release provided to The Dallas Express.
The following seven people, almost all of whom were from Texas, were arrested for alleged solicitation of prostitution:
- Michael Turpin, 30, of Millsap
- Isaac Vasquez Gonzalez, 24, of Midland
- Jason Lopez, 38, of Midland
- Jose Manso Lama, 53, of Odessa
- Jesus Madrid, 54, of Odessa
- Christopher Tisler, 43, of Chico, California.
- Guy Hutson, 43, also from Odessa, was arrested on a warrant for failure to appear regarding a prior solicitation of prostitution charge.
Through the operation, 14 victims were successfully recovered, including individuals from Texas cities including Austin, Dallas, Houston, Irving, Midland, and Odessa, as well as from other locations such as Las Vegas.
The Texas Department of Public Safety’s Criminal Investigations Division was assisted in the investigation by its Intelligence and Counter-Terrorism Division, Texas Highway Patrol, Homeland Security Investigations, the Midland and Odessa police departments, and the Midland County Sheriff’s Office, according to the release obtained by The Dallas Express.
During the recovery phase of the investigation, several civilian agencies also provided assistance to investigating law enforcement.
In Dallas, crimes similar to these have remained frequent throughout 2023, with 625 sex offenses reported as of October 24, according to the Dallas crime analytics dashboard.
Complicating its ability to respond to crime is the Dallas Police Department’s shortage of officers, as less than 3,200 officers are currently sworn in. This shortage follows an analysis estimating that Dallas needs approximately 4,000 officers to manage crime adequately.
Notably, in nearby Fort Worth, where private security guards and special police units patrol downtown, crime rates are much lower than in Downtown Dallas, as previously reported by The Dallas Express.